Why
Doesn't
God Show
Himself?

[showself.jpg]

TOM BRACED HIMSELF as the car
     screeched to a stop.
     "Sorry, Tom.   I didn't see the dumb
kid.   She shouldn't be riding on the streets."

   "Maybe you're going too fast," Tom
said.
   Marty accelerated, and resumed the
conversation.   "Why doesn't He just reveal
Himself?"

   "He has.   Jesus Christ was God in the
flesh--"

   Marty shook a fist at the
car ahead.   "C'MON!   You got
an engine in that thing, don't
you?"

   "Looks like an older
woman,"
Tom said.   (Bracing
himself was becoming second
nature.)
   "Then she should get off
the road!
  It's bogus.   You keep
showing me all these things in the Bible,
pointing to God's existence, and yet, all He
has to do is show Himself.   Give us a sign!
A burning cross in the sky would be nice."

   "That's already been suggested."
   "Huh?--"   Marty's horn blasted the older
woman.   "WHAT ARE YOU STOPPING
HERE FOR?!"

   "She's in trouble," Tom said.   "We should
stop and help--"

   "Hey, look!   She's still within the city.   I'm
sure someone else will help her, someone
who's not late already."
  Marty slowly
inched the nose of his car forward, bullying
himself into the left lane, then zooming

around the stalled car.
   "Marty, God wants to convict your
conscience, not compel your senses."

   Marty glanced at Tom long enough to
look dumbfounded.
   "In other words," continued Tom, "if God
did put a burning cross in the sky, you and
everyone else would be compelled to obey
Him.   You'd be submitting to Him only
because you had no other choice, not
because you saw yourself as a hell-
   deserving, hell-bound sinner in
   need of a Saviour.   God wants
   to show you you're a sinner.
   All the miracles in the world
   won't convince you of that."

      "I don't buy it--"   Marty's
   eyes froze on the rear view
   mirror.   He slowed down.
      "What's wrong?" Tom
   asked.
   "What?   Can't I slow down?   The speed
limit's 30, you know."
  Marty sat-up,
choking the wheel with both hands.
   "I just thought of a verse that may
answer your question.   You mind if I--"

   "Sure, sure, whatever!"   Marty, stiff as
a board, kept glancing now and then at the
mirror.
   Tom contorted his body, stretching for
the Bible laying on the back seat, and
noticed the two blue lights ominously
staring back through the rear window.
   The lights were still off, and Marty was
doing everything physically possible to keep
them that way . . .


"You keep showing
me all these things
in the Bible, pointing
to God's existence,
and yet, all He
has to do is show
Himself."

   Tom smiled, turning back in his seat with the
Bible in hand.   "Actually, I just thought of a
better verse."
  Tom quickly found it.   "Eccle-
siastes 8:11 says, ‘Because sentence against an
evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the
heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to
do evil.’
"

   "What is that supposed to mean?"   Marty's
voice had a slight tremble.
   "It means that left unchecked, we are likely
to sin all we want.   It's kinda like in those old
westerns; everyone's shooting up the saloon,
carousing, and getting drunk, and then the
sheriff walks in.   Suddenly, everyone's a law
abiding citizen."

   "How do you get that from the verse?"
Marty made a right turn, grimacing as he
glanced at the mirror.   The dark blue lights were
still there.
   "Look, Tommy," Marty said, "Let's change
the subject."

   "One more verse."
   "Forget it!   Let's talk about sports.   You think
Marino should retire?"

   Tom found another verse: "Judges 21:25
says ‘In those days there was no king in Israel:
every man did that which was right in his own
eyes.’
  See, without a sheriff, no one is law
abiding.   It's the same thing with God.   If He
readily showed His face, everyone would try to
be on their best behavior.   It would be that much
harder to convince anyone that they are sinners.
But since God quietly stays in the background,
we sin all we want, thinking it's safe to do so.
We're self-incriminated.   When God pricks our
conscience, we have no excuse--"

   Marty choked the wheel harder.   "You're
grasping at straws."

   Tom smiled, then looked at his watch.   "Hey,
we're running late!"

   Marty, glanced at the mirror, quietly cursing
what he was still seeing.
   "Step on it, Marty!   C'MON!   Doesn't this
thing have an engine?"

   "I'm going as fast as I can!"
   "You were going faster before?   What
happened?"

   "Shut up, all right!"


IN THE NOVEL Contact, by Carl Sagan,
  the question is asked: Why doesn't God
  just put a burning cross in the sky?

Many feel that, if God wants to exercise
His sovereignty over us, then He should
stop playing games with all the subjective
little "signs" that require faith, and simply
come right out and reveal Himself.

The evidence for God's existence, so the
skeptics say, is not clear enough,
considering that an all-powerful God could
make it as clear as He wanted.

It is true that, if God wanted to rule over
us, He is better served revealing Himself,
"compelling" us to submit.   But, His real
goal is to save us!   And this requires that
we recognize, and admit, our need to be
saved.   This can only be achieved if we
clearly see ourselves for what we really
are--guilty sinners.

God's Word says: "For there is NOT A
JUST MAN UPON EARTH, that doeth good,
and sinneth not."
  Eccl. 7:20

"As it is written,
THERE IS NONE
RIGHTEOUS, no, not
one."
  Rom. 3:10

These accusations are
made by God, Himself.
This is the way God
sees us.   It is the way
we are, period!   We
are sinners by any
definition -- hell-
deserving, hell-bound
sinners.   "For ALL
HAVE SINNED, and
come short of the glory
of God."
  Rom. 3:23

We can't deny it; our
behavior betrays us.
Notice how detailed
God's accusation is, as
He describes some of
our behavior:

How much proof is
enough, anyway?

Suppose God did put a burning cross in
the sky.   Would it cause Carl Sagan to
drop down to his knees in repentance
toward God?   Of course not!
   So what kind of a sign would it
ultimately take?   You can well imagine
that no matter the sign, the God-rejecter
will always excuse it away as not being
definitive proof of God's existence.
   To demand a sign from God is a cop
out.   The problem has never been the lack
of evidence.   The Bible says creation, our
mere existence, is proof enough of God's
existence.   The problem has always been
the person's interpretation of the
evidence.   People will always interpret the
given evidence, according to their
personal bias.
   Anyone who has resolved to reject God,
in their heart, will reject any evidence as
proof, no matter how definitive it may be.
The real problem lies in the person's
heart!   "The fool hath said IN HIS HEART,
There is no God."
  Psalm 53:1
The last statement:
"There is no fear of
God before their
eyes,"
explains why
many don't readily
keep their sinful
behavior in check.

   Without the ever
looming fear that God
is watching, we act
like the real sinners
that we are.   And it is
our sinfulness that
God wants us to see.
   He wants us to see
ourselves at our worst.
For it is only then that
we will see our dire
need of a Saviour.

In our story, Marty's
behavior changed
when a higher
authority was

"They [US!] are all gone out of the way,
they are together become unprofitable;
there is none that doeth good, no, not one.
Their throat is an open sepulchre; with their
tongues they have used deceit; the poison
of asps is under their lips: whose mouth is
full of cursing and bitterness: Their feet are
swift to shed blood: Destruction and misery
are in their ways: And the way of peace
have they not known: There is no fear of
God before their eyes."
  Rom. 3:12-18

watching.   However, with no "outside"
authority looking over Marty's shoulder, his
true self came out.   His behavior was self-
incriminating.   Whenever it came time to
convince Marty that he had broken the law,
he couldn't honestly deny his guilt.
   Likewise, if our sinfulness was not self-
evident, all of God's accusations would be
ignored in the cloak of self-righteous
denial.   Thus, we see one reason why God
doesn't show Himself.

IF you were to die today, are you 100% SURE
you would go to Heaven?
  The Bible says
YOU CAN BE SURE (1 John 5:13).

BUT FIRST, you must realize that what keeps you
from going to Heaven are your sins, because:
"...your iniquities [sins] have separated
between you and your God,"
Isaiah 59:2.
In fact, in God's eyes YOU ARE A SINNER: "For
all have sinned, and come short
of the glory of God;"
Romans 3:23.

SECONDLY, you must realize that there is
NOTHING you can do to save yourself and earn
Heaven: "For by grace are ye saved through
faith; and that not of yourselves: it is
the gift of God: Not of works, lest any
man should boast."
  (Eph. 2:8-9)   Baptism, good
deeds, church membership, self-righteousness are
all examples of good works that cannot save you,
because: "Not by works of
righteousness
which we have done, but
according to his mercy he
[Christ] saved
us
,"
Titus 3:5.

THE ONLY WAY you can get saved is through
Jesus Christ.   He said: "I am the way, the
truth, and the life: no man cometh unto
the Father, but by me."
  (John 14:6)   THAT'S
WHY
: "...while we were yet sinners, Christ
died for us
."
  Romans 5:8-9

THEREFORE: You must REPENT (change your
mind
); admit that you are a Hell deserving sinner
and can't save yourself.   And call upon Christ, and
Him alone, to save you.   "if thou shalt confess
with thy mouth the Lord Jesus
[REPENT], and
shalt believe in thine heart
[TRUST] that God
hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be
saved."
  Romans 10:9

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